UAAP: Too much 'papogi,' not much fight for UP in loss to UST?

Norman Lee Benjamin Riego on Oct 10, 2018 05:52 PM
Too much 'papogi,' not much fight for UP in loss to UST?
UP didn't live up to its monicker in its sorry loss to UST

University of Sto. Tomas got the jump on the University of the Philippines on Wednesday and never let go.

The Growling Tigers got off to a 12-2 start and only took the fight out of their opponents the rest of the way.

The Maroons tried anything and everything, but just couldn’t get going.

In one instance in the second quarter, in fact, assistant coach Ricky Dandan yelled at their players from the bench, seemingly trying to light a fire under them.

After UST’s Ken Zamora took and then made a triple over the outstretched arms of State U’s Juan Gomez de Liano, coach Ricky was seen shouting. “Ayaw niyong dumepensa? Ayaw niyong dumepensa,” he was exclaiming.

He also added, “Puro tayo papogi!”

Post-game, head coach Bo Perasol could only agree with his assistant. Asked if he believes his boys, indeed, were “papogi,” he answered, “Oo. Oo. Oo. Oo.”

That is exactly why he understood coach Ricky’s outburst. “Coach Ricky is in charge of our defense. Parang, he lost it na why can’t you do it if you can do it,” he shared.

In the eyes of the always amiable mentor, UP is, clearly, still getting used to the fact that it is getting so much attention. As he put it, “It’s part of getting used to the adulation, na ‘Ang galing niyo.’ As a coach, kailangan mong ipaalala na ang focus mo, wala sa tao, wala sa tambol, kundi ginagawa natin.”

He then continued, “I think, in the beginning, that was exactly what happened.”

Indeed, in the first half alone, the Maroons gave up 53 points and allowed their opponents to shoot 52 percent from the field. Without a doubt, it was the defense that was the problem.

For his part, Juan GDL did nothing but own up to his shortcomings. “I don’t know. I was just playing bad defense to be honest,” he said.

He also added, “The blame is on me. I wasn’t able to lead the team much. I wasn’t being aggressive.”

In that light, it is the coach’s job to keep teaching his players – and for coach Bo, that was all that coach Ricky was doing. “As young players, they just have to understand that these coaches are trying to help them. They’re just trying to tell you that you’re better than that,” he shared.

He then continued, “They all know the personality of coach Ricky so that is nothing that is new to them.”

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Follow this writer on Twitter, @riegogogo.

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